Parish teachers to receive $50,000

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Santa will be arriving early from the North Pole, bearing gifts for nearly 30 Bossier Parish educators. He will make a special stop at 3:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 17 at Bossier Parish School for Technology and Innovative Learning, 1020 Innovation Drive in Bossier City, where $50,000 in grants will be dispersed.

For the fifth year since the Sydney Biedenharn Educators Endowment was established, the Biedenharn Foundation is not only continuing its commitment to invest in education at Bossier Schools, but is increasing its pledge to enrich classrooms with technology and innovative learning tools.   

Twenty-nine teachers will be awarded $50,000 to fund grant proposals they pitched to further reach and engage students. Thanks to the generous support of the Biedenharn Foundation, this will mark 77 classroom grants that have been awarded over the last five years, totaling $155,000.

Following the check presentation ceremony, a Coca-Cola themed reception will be held as an acknowledgement to the connection shared between the Biedenharns and Coca-Cola. Sydney Biedenharn was a Bossier Parish resident whose family was the first to own and operate the Coca-Cola Bottling operation in Shreveport.

Biedenharn, who passed away in 2012, was an educator at heart. She taught high school for seven years before joining her father to work at the Shreveport bottling plant. Her children attended school in Benton and Bossier Schools Superintendent Scott Smith remembers Biedenharn readily volunteering to substitute teach when needed. In her memory, the Biedenharn Foundation established the Sydney Biedenharn Educators Endowment to benefit Bossier Parish educators and students.